It’s no secret that research takes a lot of trial and error. Any senior here at PRISMS can tell you that although two years seems like enough time to complete their chosen research project, the time goes by very quickly. Being able to work under the supervision of university professors during the summer can not only allow students to make significant progress on their projects, but also learn new research skills.
This summer, two PRISMS students participated in a new summer internship program with the University of the Sciences in Philadelphia. May Oh and Justin Saintil spent several weeks in the lab of Dr. Christopher Janetopoulos learning state of the art microscopy techniques and working on their individual research projects.
May’s research focuses on genetic engineering in the bacterium E. coli. She is making targeted changes in a key membrane protein and studying the effect of these changes on the bacterium’s susceptibility to a virus. Justin’s research centers on the development of an electric motor to operate a new device developed by Dr. Janetopoulos that is used to isolate mobile, single-cell organisms, making them easier to observe and study under a microscope. Justin will also be exploring the use of carbon microtubes in the study of microorganisms.
“Internships like this are a great opportunity for students to see first-hand how research labs operate on the college level. Our students are introduced to authentic research much earlier than most students in the U.S., and spending time in a university research setting is a beneficial, and often transformative, addition to our research program” says Dr. David Hauser, the Science Dept. Chair at PRISMS. “This is a great program and we hope to have additional internship opportunities at the University of the Sciences and other institutions next summer”.